Call For Participation

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Call for Participation in the Blue Waters Student Internship Program

Preparation for petascale computing requires solid grounding in Computational Science and Engineering (CSE), HPC and HPC-related curricula. As a community, we must address the engagement of a larger and more diverse workforce to broaden participation and to ensure that CSE education keeps pace with the evolution of science and technology. We will leverage faculty expertise to establish best practices, identify and fill gaps, and modernize the CSE curriculum across all science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.

The NCSA Blue Waters petascale computing facility funded by NSF will support this effort by providing 1% of the computing capacity of its computational infrastructure in direct support of educational applications. The Blue Waters system will support sustained petaflop performance of scientific codes, and thereby provide a unique educational learning experience for students across the nation.

Rationale and Audience

The Blue Waters education emphasis is intended to prepare the next generation of undergraduate and graduate students, the next generation of K-12 teachers, and an educated workforce. All undergraduate institutions are encouraged to participate including 2- and 4-year colleges and universities, minority serving institutions, EPSCoR institutions, women's colleges, and institutions addressing special needs students.


To achieve these goals, the Blue Waters Student Internship Program (BWSIP) is launching research experiences for undergraduate and graduate students to engage the national community.

Who should participate in the Blue Waters Student Internship Program?

  • Undergraduate faculty who would like to mentor an undergraduate student in a year-long internship in the sciences, engineering, or mathematics that involves teaching or researching the use of high-performance computing in studying problems in these fields.
  • Undergraduate students interested in participating in a year-long science or engineering internship. Students must be enrolled as undergraduates through Spring 2017 at a U.S. degree-granting institution.
  • Beginning graduate students who have a research advisor are eligible to apply to attend the Petascale Institute and will have their expenses covered by the program; any stipend would be the responsibility of their own research advisor.

What is the Blue Waters Student Internship Program?

Support is provided by the NSF-funded Blue Waters Project for sustained petascale computing to support year-long undergraduate internship experiences involving the application of high-performance computing to problems in the sciences, engineering, or mathematics. The program provides a student stipend totaling $5000, a two-week intensive high-performance computing workshop, and, for select students, travel to the Blue Waters Symposium 2017.

This program provides support for undergraduate internship activities at any accredited degree granting institution in the United States. The internships awarded through this program may be to students working with a faculty mentor on their home campus, or at another campus. Interested faculty need to create a position description, and can specify a particular student that the position is intended for, or may select a qualified applicant with Blue Waters support through our program.

How can I promote the Blue Waters Student Internship Program?

A PowerPoint slide is available to let students know about the program. In addition, flyers are available (in pdf format) to inform students and colleagues about this program.

Blue Waters Student Internship Program Slide
Blue Waters Student Internship Program Flyer

When is the Blue Waters Student Internship Program?

Student applications must be submitted by February 1, 2016, while intern position descriptions from faculty are due February 15. Be sure to click the 'Submit' button at the bottom of the web form to be entered into the BWSIP system. Review and selection will be conducted in late February, with notifications being made by March 1.

A two-week workshop will be held in late May at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) facilities on the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign campus. Interns are expected to work full-time over the Summer and as their schedules allow during the academic year. Work plans will need to be arranged by the student and faculty mentor and approved by the Blue Waters Student Internship Program.

How do I apply for the Blue Waters Student Internship Program?

  • By clicking the button at the top or bottom of this page, faculty should create descriptions of undergraduate internship positions they have available, indicating either that the position is intended for a particular student applicant or that it is open to qualified applicants.
  • By clicking the button at the top or bottom of this page, eligible undergraduate students should submit an application for consideration. There is an area on the form where students can identify a faculty member as a mentor. Students who have taken the initiative to arrange an internship with a faculty mentor are more likely to be selected for this program than students who have not.

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